By Czarina Nicole Ong
Several members of the Akbayan Youth group filed charges of grave misconduct, serious dishonesty and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service against Presidential Communications Operations head Esther Margaux (Mocha) Uson before the Ombudsman Monday morning due to her controversial blog, which is reportedly being used to spread fake news.
In their complaint, the group hit Mocha for maintaining a public and open blog that has been the source of an “arbitrary ascertainment of facts” that encouraged online users to carry out “cyberbullying attacks” against students who were merely conducting peaceful protests.
“The online and public persona of public official Uson is the source of numerous and deliberate misinformation; this is contrary to the mandate of the PCOO to ensure transparency and full and appropriate disclosure of policies, programs, official activities, and achievements of the Office of the President and the Executive Branch which are of public concern, and to inform and communicate the same to the Filipino people,” the complaint read.
Last November 18, the youth group said that Uson used her Facebook page to spread false accusations and made it appear that students of St. Scholastica’s College were required to attend a protest rally.
They said Uson’s post was unfair and unreasonable since they conducted the protest on their own will and wanted to do so peacefully. As a result of her actions, the students of St. Scholastica suffered from cyberbullying.
The students stressed that Uson is a threat to the security of the people who only want to voice their complaints against the government. What’s worse, they said she is “not competent” to fulfill her functions as a public officer because of her “gross ignorance.”
Just this January, Uson wrote on her blog that Mayon Volcano is located in Naga. This misinformation really “caused confusion to Filipinos,” they wrote in the complaint.
As to the complaint of gross dishonesty, the students said this was due to her date on August 27, 2017, when she called on elected officials from the opposition to visit the wake of a slain law enforcement officer.
Unfortunately, the said wake of the late Senior Inspector Mark Garcia took place over a year ago since he passed away on August 21, 2016.
“Uson not only made it appear that she herself took the photograph, but she also made it appear that the soldiers in the photograph were members of the same military forces she was referring to in her message although in fact she was well aware that the soldiers in the photograph were not Filipinos,” the complaint read.
Uson was also accused of using her powers for the improper purpose of stifling dissenting officials from the opposition. On March 18, 2017, the group said Uson called Vice President Leni Robredo “bobo” (stupid) at least five times on live radio/television.
“Clearly, Uson continues to transgress established and definite rules of action and conduct by her unlawful behavior of ignoring the mandate of her office to promote transparency,” the complaint read.